We have updated our Online Services Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. See our Cookies Notice for information concerning our use of cookies and similar technologies. By using this website or clicking “I ACCEPT”, you consent to our Online Services Terms of Use.

Schedule an appointment today

Categorical Pathway

residents in a group

The Categorical Pathway is a traditional three-year internal medicine residency with a focus on inpatient and outpatient clinical training, patient safety and increasing autonomy during the years of training. The two prominent themes are patient care and career development.

Length of training: three years
Setting: University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center and Louis Stokes Cleveland Veteran Affairs Medical Center

Description and Defining Characteristics

This pathway is designed to provide broad training in both inpatient and outpatient general medicine as well as across all medicine subspecialties. Our program prides itself in outstanding clinical training through developing hands-on skills, critical thinking and autonomy among residents.

The pathway's formalized curriculum promotes continuous learning, inquiry, debate and critical appraisal of literature. By rotating at UH Cleveland Medical Center and the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center, our residents take care of a diverse patient population across unique clinical settings, contributing to a richer clinical experience. Our residents thrive in an atmosphere that provides a balance between supervision and autonomy. As the years progress, our residents are given more responsibility to deliver and lead health care in a supportive collegial environment.

Mentored Research in Focused Area of Interest

Our trainees are challenged to reach their full potential through mentored research in the area of their interest. They are given ample opportunities to be involved in clinical, translational or bench research. The pathway's flexibility allows residents to use elective time to tailor their training to further their long-term career objectives.

As a result of this unique training approach, our residents become excellent clinicians, inspiring leaders and caring humanitarians. After successfully graduating from the Categorical Pathway, residents are more than prepared to start practice as primary care physicians or hospitalists or further their training in the subspecialty fellowship of their choice.

Example Schedule

PGY1 Categorical

  • 4 - 5 Blocks Wards
  • 1 Block Elective
  • 0.5 Block Professional Development
  • 1.5 Blocks Ambulatory
  • 0.5 Block CICU
  • 1 Block Vacation
  • 1 Block UH MICU
  • 0.5 Block VA MICU
  • 0 - 0.5 Block Jeopardy
  • 1 Block Night Float
  • 1 block Geriatrics

PGY1 Preliminary

  • 6 Blocks Wards
  • 3 Blocks Elective
  • 0.5 Block VA Emergency Department
  • 1.5 Blocks VA MICU
  • 1 Block Night Float
  • 1 Block Vacation


  • 2 - 3 Blocks Wards
  • 2.5 - 3 Blocks Ambulatory (split into 5 half blocks spaced throughout the year)
  • 1 Block Vacation
  • 2 Blocks Elective
  • 0 - 0.5 Block VA Emergency Department
  • 2 - 2.5 Blocks ICU (1 Block UH MICU / 1 Block CICU)
  • 0.5 - 1.5 Blocks VA Cardiology
  • 1 - 1.5 Blocks Night Float


  • 2 - 2.5 Blocks Wards
  • 1 Block Vacation
  • 3 Blocks Elective
  • 1 Block Patient Safety & Gen Med Consults
  • 2.5 - 3 Blocks Ambulatory (split into 5 half blocks spaced throughout the year)
  • 1.5 Blocks ICU
  • 0 - 0.5 Block VA Emergency Department
  • 0 - 1 Block VA Cardiology
  • 0.5 VA ICU

Read about Nate's experience with this Pathway